Marble countertops are, in a word, beautiful. No other building material speaks of elegance or luxury as eloquently as marble. Marble is especially noted for the swirls, lines, and little imperfections that only add to its aesthetic quality.|
Marble countertops have hard, clean edges, although they can be carved with a rounded edge, according to the homeowner‚s preference. They come in different colors to match any kitchen design and theme. Designs, border, and edge details can also be etched on the marble surface to make it even more unique and give it more character.
Marble comes in many different colors. The most common marble colors are white, gray, pink, and green. The colors come from chemical deposits within the marble‚s natural limestone base. White marble has no impurities in it, making the pure calcium base visible and giving it a radiant glow. This kind of marble is considered Grade A and is very expensive.
Gray marble varieties have carbon infused to the base calcium. This type of marble is usually found in coal deposits or areas close to them. Carbon from the coal deposits gives marble a gray stain. The depth of color depends on how far the marble deposit is from the coal deposit. A marble rock resting near a coal deposit absorbs more carbon and tends to have a darker tone, and vice versa. Gray marble usually has a lot of swirly patterns and color inconsistencies, which add to the intricate beauty of the marble.
Pink marble often has traces of iron or iron oxide in it. In its natural form, pure iron has a reddish tint to it, which mixes with the natural white of the calcium base in marble, turning the stone pink. High iron concentrations result in a marble that is a deep, lush red. Iron-stained marble usually has the most diverse color variations. Certain sections of the marble may be a deep blood red, while others may be almost completely white, with every imaginable shade of red or pink located within a single piece.
Green marble is often stained with serpentine, a rock compound composed of magnesium, silicate bases, and small traces of other minerals. This causes a pale olive-green tint, although very rare varieties have a more vibrant green like that found in leaves.
Perhaps the most prized visual characteristic of marble is its natural glow. The calcium base left over from the limestone‚s metamorphosis allows small amounts of light to enter the stone before reflecting it. This results in a pale, muted glow about the marble.
White marble pieces have more glow than colored ones. Stained marbles contain other minerals, which limit the absorption and reflection of light. However, white marble is more commonly found in sculptures and artifacts and are rarely used for countertops because they are very expensive. Marble countertops are usually cream, gray, black, or green.